WWI Ship Name Index
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U.S. NAVY TEMPORARY AUXILIARY SHIPS, 1917-1919
WORLD WAR I ERA AUXILIARIES UNSUITABLE FOR WAR PURPOSES
From 1890 through 1916 the Navy carried harbor and other subsidiary service vessels (including former combatants) under the category
"Unsuitable for War Purposes," previously "Unfit for Sea Service." In 1920 this category was renamed "Unclassified" and the Bureau of Construction and Repair filed
correspondence concerning them under the file symbol IX. The IX numbers became official hull numbers in 1941.
During World War I the Navy temporarily acquired eight coastal and river passenger steamers that served as
training ships, local transportation vessels and stationary berthing or hospital hulks. In peacetime these would
probably have been classified as "Unsuitable for War Purposes" or, later, "Unclassified."
The lists below include these eight ships, all of which were near or
over 1000 gross tons. Not covered are the many smaller coastal,
river and sheltered water passenger steamers as well as many other subsidiary service vessels that the Navy also
had in service during this time.
This page features larger coastal and river passenger steamers
that were employed by the World War I era U.S. Navy for subsidiary
duties. Where available, a photograph of each ship is
Ships in this group:
EIGHT SHIPS with typical American coastal and river
passenger steamer characteristics: VERY LONG SUPERSTRUCTURES and
ONE or TWO SMOKESTACKS. They are subdivided below into two
Click the small photographs
to prompt a larger view of the same image.
TWO SHIPS -- Former coastal passenger steamer:
Fenimore, USN 1918-1918 (ex-American S.S. Fenimore, 1892).
1634 Gross Tons; Length: 253.2'; Beam: 36.3', Acq. ca. May 18, Lost 21 Jun 18, ID # 2681
Side-Wheel Steamer, ex Frank Jones
1916. Used for coastal transportation. Burned at York, Va., 21 June 1918.
Ransom B. Fuller, USN 1917-1918 (ex-American
S.S. Ransom B. Fuller, 1902).
2329 Gross Tons; Length: 317.4'; Beam: 40.1', Acq. 26 Nov 17, Disp. 15 Apr 18, No ID #
Side-Wheel Steamer. Used as a barracks ship at New London.
S.S. Ransom B. Fuller:
SIX SHIPS -- Former river and harbor passenger steamers:
Adirondack, USN 1917-1919 (ex-American S.S. Adirondack, 1896).
3644 Gross Tons; Length: 388.2'; Beam: 50.0', Acq. 25 Sep 17, Disp. 24 Jan 19, ID # 1270
Side-Wheel Steamer. Two tall thin smokestacks. Employed as a barracks ship at the New York Navy Yard.
Boston Floating Hospital, USN 1918-1918 (ex-American S.S. Boston Floating Hospital, 1906).
1200 tons (displ.); Length: 160.25'; Beam: 47.0', Comm. 7 Jan 18, Disp. 2 Jun 18, ID # 2366
One tall thin smokestack. Employed as a stationary hospital ship.
C.W. Morse, USN 1917-1919 (ex-American S.S. C.W. Morse, 1903).
4307 Gross Tons; Length: 411.1'; Beam: 50.7', Acq. ca. 1917, Disp. 10 Feb 19, ID # 1966
Side-Wheel Steamer. Two tall thin smokestacks. Employed as a receiving ship.
Iro, USN 1918-1918 (ex-American S.S. Iroquois, 1889).
1652 Gross Tons; Length: 256.0'; Beam: 37.4', Acq. 12 Aug 18, Disp. 30 Apr 19, ID # 2679
Side-Wheel Steamer, ex Kennebec
1912. Used in the Chesapeake Bay area. Also recorded as commissioned 19 Apr 18.
No image is available of USS Iro.
Rosedale, USN 1918-1919 (ex-American S.S. Rosedale, 1877).
938 Gross Tons; Length: 216.0'; Beam: 34.2', Comm. 22 Jul 18, Disp. 31 Mar 19, ID # 3079
St. Johns, USN 1918-1919 (ex-American S.S. St. Johns, 1878).
1098 Gross Tons; Length: 250.0'; Beam: 38.0', Acq. ca. 1918, Disp. 10 Jun 19, ID # 3710
USS Boston Floating Hospital:
S.S. C.W. Morse:
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S.S. St. Johns: